Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Churchillian Proverbs

Winston Churchill overcame a childhood speech impediment to become one of the world’s great orators and writers. He was also a visionary, standing nearly alone in warnings about the rise of national socialism (i.e., Nazis). The combination of keen insight, the ability to turn a phrase, and a lengthy career as a writer and speaker resulted in lots of quotable material. Here are some of my favorite quotes from Churchill. Enjoy them. These are gems!

  1. Some people regard private enterprise as a predatory tiger to be shot. Others look on it as a cow they can milk. Not enough people see it as a healthy horse, pulling a sturdy wagon.

  2. Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.

  3. We shape our buildings; thereafter they shape us.

  4. Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.

  5. Sure I am of this, that you have only to endure to conquer.

  6. The empires of the future are the empires of the mind.

  7. You have enemies? Good. That means you've stood up for something, sometime in your life.

  8. We contend that for a nation to tax itself into prosperity is like a man standing in a bucket and trying to lift himself up by the handle.

  9. Every day you may make progress. Every step may be fruitful. Yet there will stretch out before you an ever-lengthening, ever-ascending, ever-improving path. You know you will never get to the end of the journey. But this, so far from discouraging, only adds to the joy and glory of the climb.

  10. It's not enough that we do our best; sometimes we have to do what's required.

  11. The farther backward you can look, the farther forward you can see.

  12. The first quality that is needed is audacity.

  13. The inherent vice of capitalism is the unequal sharing of blessings; the inherent virtue of socialism is the equal sharing of miseries.

  14. The power of man has grown in every sphere, except over himself.

  15. The price of greatness is responsibility.

  16. The truth is incontrovertible, malice may attack it, ignorance may deride it, but in the end; there it is.

  17. There is no such thing as a good tax.

  18. A fanatic is one who can't change his mind and won't change the subject.

  19. A joke is a very serious thing.

  20. A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on.

  21. A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.

  22. All the great things are simple, and many can be expressed in a single word: freedom, justice, honor, duty, mercy, hope.

  23. An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last.

  24. Attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference.

  25. Continuous effort - not strength or intelligence - is the key to unlocking our potential.

  26. Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen.

  27. Criticism may not be agreeable, but it is necessary. It fulfils the same function as pain in the human body. It calls attention to an unhealthy state of things.

  28. Difficulties mastered are opportunities won.

  29. Eating words has never given me indigestion.

  30. However beautiful the strategy, you should occasionally look at the results.

  31. We occasionally stumble over the truth but most of us pick ourselves up and hurry off as if nothing had happened.

  32. I am always ready to learn although I do not always like being taught.

  33. I am an optimist. It does not seem too much use being anything else.

  34. There is no such thing as public opinion. There is only published opinion.

  35. These are not dark days: these are great days - the greatest days our country has ever lived.

  36. If you are going through hell, keep going.

  37. Kites rise highest against the wind - not with it.

  38. No crime is so great as daring to excel.

  39. No idea is so outlandish that it should not be considered with a searching but at the same time a steady eye.

  40. One ought never to turn one's back on a threatened danger and try to run away from it. If you do that, you will double the danger. But if you meet it promptly and without flinching, you will reduce the danger by half. Never run away from anything. Never!

  41. Play the game for more than you can afford to lose... only then will you learn the game.

  42. Socialism is a philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel of envy, its inherent virtue is the equal sharing of misery.

  43. This is no time for ease and comfort. It is time to dare and endure.

  44. To build may have to be the slow and laborious task of years. To destroy can be the thoughtless act of a single day.

  45. True genius resides in the capacity for evaluation of uncertain, hazardous, and conflicting information.

  46. We are masters of the unsaid words, but slaves of those we let slip out.

  47. We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.

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